This man beat a woman so badly her own friend couldn't recognise her

Police custody photograph of Steven Kaged
-Credit: (Image: South Wales Police)

A man subjected his partner to such a brutal beating her friends didn't recognise her bloodied and swollen face, a court has heard. Steven Kaged repeatedly punched and kicked the woman to the head and dragged her around by her hair "like a rag doll".

After being arrested, questioned, and released the defendant went on a spree of thefts and burglaries which included using a ladder to break into a family home. Kaged - who has more than 150 offences on his record including 17 of violence and 56 theft, burglary and dishonesty matters - has now been handed an extended sentence as a dangerous offender.

Kathryn Lane, prosecuting, told Cardiff Crown Court that the domestic assault happened on October 6 last year near where the victim was living. She said Kaged became aggressive towards his then-partner as they walked down a road and his behaviour was such that a passing jogger became concerned and tried to intervene - the defendant "took umbrage" at the intervention and angrily chased the runner away before returning to the complainant. The prosecutor said Kaged then attacked his partner, striking her to the face and knocking her to the ground before repeatedly punching and kicking the woman and, in the victim's own words, dragging her around by her hair "like a rag doll".

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The woman returned to her accommodation and the court heard friends at first did not recognise her due to her swollen and bloodied face. The woman subsequently went to Cardiff's University Hospital of Wales for treatment. The court heard the defendant was arrested on October 9 and his reply to being cautioned was: "There's always another side to the story". At interview he gave a prepared statement in which he denied causing any injury to his partner.

The court heard the 42-year-old defendant was released on bail and a fortnight later committed a string of offences in Leominster in Herefordshire. On the morning of October 23 Kaged broke into a garden shed and stole an e-bike worth some £1,200 before stealing an assortment of items from a Co-op store, a petrol station shop, and a pharmacy in the town all in the space of less than two hours. For the latest court reports, sign up to our crime newsletter here

The prosecutor said the defendant was arrested and interviewed about the thefts on December 19 - answering "no comment" to all questions asked - before being charged and bailed. Kaged then began another spree of offending starting with shoplifting at the One Stop shop in Barry on Boxing Day and then burgling a house on Porthkerry Road in Barry in the early hours of the following day.

The burglary saw him use a ladder to gain access to a first floor window and steal a haul of items including trainers, clothes, alcohol, and a Bluetooth speaker. The spree continued on New Year's Day when he stole a Samsung phone from a CeX shop in Cardiff and then two days later when he entered the warehouse area of a Sainsbury's Local store in Penarth and hid until closing time. However when he began to move about in the storage area after-hours he triggered the internal alarm and police who went to the scene found him hiding in a toilet.

Steven Kaged, of no fixed abode, had previously pleaded guilty to inflicting grievous bodily harm (GBH) with intent, non-dwelling burglaries, burglary, and five counts of theft when he appeared in the dock for sentencing. He has 71 previous convictions for 159 offences including 17 of violence - many of which are domestic-related - and 56 for thefts and kindred matters. He has five previous assaults occasioning actual bodily harm on his record, assaults which have seen him punching and kicking women and dragging them about by their hair. There are also multiple burglaries on his antecedent record. In 2020 he was sentenced to 37 months in prison after burgling the Bridgend home of an NHS worker during the Covid lockdown just two days after being released from jail.

Joshua Scouller, for Kaged, said it was accepted the defendant's previous convictions were "deeply unattractive" as were the current offences before the court. He said "alcohol and illicit substances have informed his offending over the years" and said the defendant understands the distress his offending causes others and is taking steps to try to understand why he keeps finding himself in the cycle of offending.

Judge Rhys Rowlands said he had read a psychiatric report and a pre-sentence report on Kaged as well as a letter from the defendant in which he expressed his desire to turn his life around. The judge said the only person who knew whether that stated desire was true was Kaged, and he said he had little doubt the defendant had expressed such sentiments on previous occasions too. He said given everything he had read and heard about the defendant and his offending he was driven to the conclusion that he should be considered a dangerous offender and given an extended sentence.

With one-third discounts for his guilty pleas Kaged was given a six-year extended sentence for GBH consisting of four years in custody followed by a two-year licence period. He must serve two-thirds of the custodial element of the sentence before he can apply to be released but it will be for the Parole Board to determine if he is safe to be let out. This sentence will be served subsequent to a three-year prison sentence for all the other other matters.

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